Student Well-Being

Wyoming May Expand Youth-Concussion Law to Nonschool Sports

By Bryan Toporek — February 21, 2012 1 min read
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A bill that advanced to the Wyoming Senate floor Monday would expand the provisions of the state’s youth-concussion law to nonschool sports, including requiring coaches to undergo concussion training.

Wyoming initially passed a youth-concussion law last year that only applies to junior high and high school sports teams. That law prohibits coaches or athletic trainers from allowing a student-athlete to participate in an athletic event on a day when he or she exhibited symptoms of a concussion.

Notably, the law does not include language specifically requiring coaches/trainers to pull players out if they’re suspected of a concussion during a practice or game. It only addresses players not being allowed to participate if they’re exhibiting symptoms of a concussion.

The proposed bill doesn’t change that aspect of the state’s youth-concussion law, but it would expand the law’s reach to nonschool sporting events, too. Each organization sponsoring youth-athletic events would be required to provide concussion training to coaches and athletic trainers under the proposed bill. Coaches and trainers would also have to follow the return-to-play protocol established by last year’s law.

Only a handful of states, including Louisiana and Maryland, have youth-concussion laws that expand past school sports.

The Wyoming Senate Labor, Health, and Social Services Committee passed the bill unanimously yesterday, sending it to a full Senate vote.

As for a few other youth-concussion law updates:

In Florida, a bill was introduced last month that would require student-athletes to be removed from play if suspected of a concussion. It’s currently awaiting action in the Senate Budget Subcommittee on Education Pre-K-12 Appropriations.

In Georgia, a bill requiring the state board of education to develop a concussion policy—including criteria for removing student-athletes from play—has been withdrawn from the state House and recommitted to the Health & Human Services Committee. The bill was pre-filed in November.

And in Kentucky, the state House unanimously passed legislation that would set a policy regarding student-athletes’ return to play after a concussion back on Feb. 2. The bill would also require coaches to undergo concussion training. It’s been moved to a state Senate committee for the time being.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Schooled in Sports blog.